Five Good Reasons
- The foundry is the oldest manufacturing company in the UK. Bells have been made continuously in Whitechapel since the 1570s and the foundry has been on its present site since the mid 1740s. Even in Charles Dickens’ day, it was an old and venerable business.
- It is one of just two remaining bell foundries in Britain, and this is the one that made Big Ben in 1858, the US Liberty Bell in 1752 and many more throughout England and across the world.
- The foundry is set to close imminently, and much of its contents sold at auction. We will lose the site, the business will be broken up and many specialised jobs and skills will be gone forever. Most of all, the atmosphere and ‘dust’ at this historic site will be swept away.
- This type of manufacturing and trade is part of the essence of our towns. It is all too easily lost in somewhere as pressured as central London but adds incalculably to its character. It is not some relic but an active business waiting for new energy and a new lease of life. As well as bell-founding, there are opportunities for other types of casting as well as training, education and creating a central London destination for craftspeople and researchers.
- We routinely raise millions of pounds to save precious works of art and other cultural icons. Why shouldn’t the foundry be considered in the same way? How is Britain allowing this national treasure to slip through our fingers?